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Summer Research: 2015 Projects


2015 science summer research projects

During the summer of 2015, 85 students worked on 53 different research projects across the science division.

Students were involved in a wide variety of research projects both on and off campus.  Some research dealt with diseases, other research with environmental concerns. Students studied plant responses to climate change and others participated in a community health project dealing with preconception reproductive knowledge. Research took place in campus labs and outdoors.  Some students traveled to other states as part of their research and some “traveled” to outer space.

Below is a sampling of 2015 projects:

Biology

Thuy-Tien Nguyen, YeaEun Lee and Andre Otte collected samples from major tributaries of Plaster Creek to identify the sources of bacterial contamination in the creek. They were supervised by Professor Randall DeJong.

Chemistry and Biochemistry

Karine Rose studied isoquinoline alkaloids in a project with Professor Carolyn Anderson.

 

 

Computer Science

Chris Dilley and Patrick Crain worked with Professor Joel Adams to develop a graphics library that would help educators teach computer science students about parallel programming. See the poster he prepared for the Science Division Summer Research Poster Fair.

Engineering

Ryan De Groot worked with Professors Julie Wildschut and Robert Hoeksema. They studied the effects of stormwater runoff in the Plaster Creek watershed, developing a model to measure management methods.

Geology, geography and environmental studies

Matthew Raybaud worked with Professor Henk Aay, emeritus, on a project to map out the path of immigration that Dutch immigrants used during the past four centuries. See the poster he prepared for the Science Division Summer Research Poster Fair.

Mathematics and statistics

David Zhang worked with Professor James Turner to explore the algebra of homotopy operations, to aid in the understanding of the topology of geometric objects. Read the summary of David's work.

Nursing

Rebekah Sytsma, Elise Veurink, Katie Verwys and Tega Ebeye reviewed databases to determine the effect of frequent mother-daughter communication about sexual and reproductive issues on sexual risk behaviors of adolescent females. They were supervised by Professors Adejoke Ayoola and Barbara Timmermans. See the poster they prepared for the Science Division Summer Research Poster Fair.

Physics and astronomy

Andrew Folkerts, with Professor Paul Harper, studied the structure of cubic and hexagonal phases in lipids, which are the basic building blocks of cell membranes.

 

Interdisciplinary

Peter Boersma worked with Professor Loren Haarsma (Physics) and Professor John Ubels (Biology) looking at ways to reduce the damaging effect of ultraviolet light on corneal epithelial cells (cells on the surfaces of eyes.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Secondary

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Learn more

See a complete list of the 2015 summer research projects.

Read summaries students wrote about their projects

See posters presented at the 2015 Science Division Summer Research Poster Fair

Read the Chimes article about summer research and the poster fair.